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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  June 12, 2014 5:00pm-7:01pm EDT

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is there a certain here at the white house about oil supplies? >> i don't have any specific information about that, i can tell you when it comes to the oil fields in -- let me make sure i get this right. we understand that that oil refinery remains in control of the government of iraq, but i have not, i don't have any other additional information about that issue. >> reports of evacuations of americans north of baghdad, americans are going to be or have been evacuated as a precaution to get them out of the way out of this moving insurgency? >> i don't have anything on that. i would ask the state department about that.
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yes. why is the president not considering ground troops at this point that the administration has had troops there, why is that not on the table? >> because we don't believe that that's the approach that we should take in this case. we would agree with senator mccain who made that point today that that was his view. what the president was referring to was the question about contemplating air strikes. i have been saying, ultimately the challenge posed by a group like isil has to be met by the iraqy government and iraqy security forces. they can be assisted like they have and are being by the united states and other partners. we will review requests for further assistance and other kinds of assistance very closey
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and obviously in this current situation very quickly. ultimately iraq's future will be decided by the ability of iraq's political leaders to come together in a spirit of unity to deal with all of the challenges that a nation like iraq faces in building its future and specifically in repelling the kind of assault that we're seeing now from an extremist group like isil which is not focused on changing iraqi domestic politics. it's focused on seizing territory and focusing on death and destruction in iraq and it's regardless of political affiliation. >> [indiscernible] >> i don't. i would refer you to the defense department.
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mark. >> jay, some people have pointed out that with isil advancing on baghdad, we may not have a common interest with iran, but we may have sort of an overlapping interest in that they're worried about the shiites in iraq. i wonder whether you think there is an overlap that the u.s. and iran has in this particular case? if that's the case, what constructive role could iran play in diffusing this crisis? >> mark, i think the question has to be not just the immediate crisis, but how iraq can move forward and that is why we have seen reports about this and we can't confirm them, but we would certainly call on the government of iraq to approach such considerations
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prudently and in the interest of national unity. iraq's future, as the president was saying, has to be one decided by all elements of iraq society. what you obviously don't want to see happen is a situation where unity is even more severely tested than it has been in the past. that would, i think, suggest that the iraqi government would need to approach that kind of question very carefully. >> but beyond staying out, is there something else iran can do that would be constructive? >> i'm not sure that this is specific to iran, but everybody in the region and the world we believe should have an interest not seeing groups like isil flourish and that's tempered
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from religious affiliation. it has to do with the sovereignty of a nation like iraq and the appalling actions that y groups like isil ow no mercy when it comes to civilians and what their overall ambition is. >> i have one small internal question. vice president biden has the port foal quow for the first term in a fairly formal way. that changed a bit in the second term. with this now doing this, is he deeply engaged? is there some thought of him picking this up again? >> vice president biden has continued to be one of the principal interlocutors of the administration with iraqi leaders. he has a long history in iraq
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with all of the political groups there and with the leaders there and that hasn't changed and certainly in recent months, the vice president has been actively engaged in discussions with the iraqi leadership. >> thanks, jay. > jay, what are the guarantees there won't be some [indiscernible] >> again, we're not contemplating boots on the ground, april. we're looking at options that we can take including in the assistance that we provide, military assistance and other assistance that we can provide to the iraqi security forces, to the iraqi government. we're evaluating requests of other actions that we might take. the president was referring in answer to the question in the oval office earlier today to specifically the question about
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whether he would consider direct action, u.s. air strikes, but we're not considering boots on the ground. >> as things happen and they're not expected and anticipated and may escalate, what are the guarantees? >> yeah, we're just not considering that, april. andre and then zeke and then we'll get out of here. >> i want to thank you for trying to be fair to me and others. we do appreciate it. >> thank you. indiscernible] >> if i knew russia, you mean post-soviet russia?
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the approach that president obama has taken is one as you know has been driven by a clear focus on our national security interests and where our interests and russia's interests overlap. we have been able to cooperate. and we have also been very clear about our disagreements with russia. those disagreements have intensified as you know, most pecially over russia's extremely unhelpful approach to the situation in ukraine and its illegal claims of anextation of a portion of the sovereign territory of ukraine. but we, again, continue to approach the relationship with deliberate very manner. use its russia to
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influence to prevail on separatists in ukraine to lay down their arms, to vacate buildings they have occupied and to abide by the approach of the new president of ukraine when it comes to reconciliation and moving forward in ukraine. e urge russia to take that action to recognize the new president and to cease its assistance to the separatists in ukraine. we'll continue to make our views on that issue and other areas where we disagree very clear, both publicly and in our conversations, frequent conversations with our counterparts in the russian government. work l also continue to
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with russia where cooperatively where we can and there are areas where we continue to work cooperatively with russia because it is in our national security interests and in our national interests to do so. >> why don't you call the against their own people and shelling [indiscernible] >> andre, i think that we all need to be clear about who is responsible for the violence in ukraine and i would urge you to as well. as you know probably, the president presented in his inaugural address on june 7 a peace plan with a cease-fire contingent with russia dehe is indicating the situation as recognizing him as the
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president of ukraine, seizing support for separatists and stopping the provision of arms and-term against the border. we are concerned by reports that these groups are now in possession of heavy weapons including tanks which would represent a significant escalation. which vice president biden president, ukraine the ukrainian government is prepared to grant amnesty within ukraine or offer safe passage back to russia to the russian militants now operating in eastern ukraine. vice president biden expressed strong support for the try lateral discussions between kraine, russia and the special representative. so i think the government in kiev has demonstrated an absolute commitment to
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de-escalating the conflict, to reconciliation within ukraine. it would be a very good thing indeed if russia would follow suit. last one. >> you mentioned earlier that legal authority to take unilateral action. i'm wondering if one of those legal authorities includes the 2002 iraq resolution which is still on the books. does the white house believe that the president has the authority under that resolution? >> what i said as i continue to answer that question was that we will evaluate requests and consider different actions that we may take. the president made that clear in the oval office. we don't have a decision on that specific issue now. when we do, we can certainly get back to you on that question. >> senator melendez a couple of weeks ago issued is that something the white house would be supportive of or killing
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that resolution? >> broadly separate from the current circumstances we have addressed, the president's approach on this issue, i don't have any updates on what he said in the past. thanks, everybody. >> jay carney was asked several questions about the islamist militants sweeping in through northern iraq capturing most yul and other cities in iraq and apparently threatening baghdad. on capitol hill, commarnecommarne saying president obama's entire national security team should resign over the insurgents of the militants in iraq. john mccain made those comments about the president's national security team in a briefing or ahead of a closed door briefing of the situation in iraq. also speaking at this briefing, a number of other senators,
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lindsey graham, joe manchin and others. >> the briefing was chilling. iraq is collapsing as i speak. the isil is an army, not a bunch of hoodlums. they have a very specific agenda, that is to create an islamic state in syria and iraq and the question for the united states, does it matter if iraq falls into their hands, syria, or a portion thereof. and if it does matter, what are we willing to do. there is no scenario where we can stop the bleeding in iraq without american air power. the iraqi army is on the verge of collapse. i would urge the administration to get all of our people out now. we got another benghazi in the making here. the air base which you have isil assets, you have iraqi
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aviation assets, they're going to be grounded when our guys leave, so at the end of the day, the advantage that the iraqi security forces would have in air power is going to be lost and i think it's just a matter of time before baghdad becomes the central theater of battle. i don't know if they go much beyond baghdad because you go into the shia part of iraqi, but the information we're receiving is that the vehicles that are being abandoned and the heavy weapons are now flowing into syria. what i worry about is eventually the king of jordan who has been an incredibly good ally and i think he is going to get caught up in this. this goes back to our mistakes in syria, our inability to deal with syria responsibly three years ago when there were about 500 foreign fighters has led to a foothold in syria that's been a launching pad against iraq,
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lebanon and jordan are probably next. to the american people, i know your world weary, i know you're tired of dealing with the mideast. the people that are moving into iraq and holding ground in syria have as part of their agenda not only to drive us out of the mideast, but to hit our homeland. the head of the f.b.i. said that the pipeline for the next 9/11 attack is likely to come from syria. there are hundreds, there are numerous american citizens who have gone to the jihad and syria, european jihaddists are now in syria. they're coordinating in syria and iraq. they hold terrain, it is my worst fear come true and if the president is willing to adjust his policy, i'm willing to help him, president bush got iraq wrong early on. i remember meeting with him and
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senator mccain and the vice president where senator mccain and myself said, what your people are telling you about iraq is not accurate. it's not a few dead-enders, mr. president. the place is falling apart. you don't have the right security footprint. after rumsfeld resigned, the search came about and president bush corrected. if president obama doesn't correct his policies regarding syria and iraq, we're going to be in a world of hurt and i would really recommend to the president to rethink his withdrawal in afghanistan because what you see in iraq is going to surely happen in afghanistan at a faster pace. and to the american people, when people put their trust in you, when they fight along your side in afghanistan and they all wind up getting subjected to radical islam all over again getting killed, it makes it hard to have reliable partners. what you see in iraq, the collapse of the security forces
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is lack of confidence. if there had been a force of americans in iraq with some aviation assets, the iraqi army would have probably fought much better, but when there is a vacuum people, go back to their sectarian corners, so one of the biggest mistakes president bush made was not understanding what would happen after the fall of saddam. i'll put blame on myself for not appreciating the situation as much as i should, but i have learned the hard way. i think the biggest mistake president obama is making was to leave iraq without any forces behind and they were clearly willing to have american forces. the sad thing is the 10,000 or 15,000 would have really made a difference. if american air power is not interjected into the equation, i don't see how you stop these people. they're moving very rapidly toward baghdad. >> what should we do now?
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>> they made a request. we have to evaluate is it in our national security interest to intervene? >> is it? >> absolutely. i think the people in the isil have as part of their agenda to attack our homeland. the next 9/11 is in the making. syria has become the afghanistan before 9/11 if it plays for safe havens and training. they want to drive us out of the region. they have as their goal to hit us throughout the world including america, so any overseas location particularly in the mideast is very much at risk now. >> what should the obama administration do? >> they should call their commanders together and say, one, does it matter if this continues to develop the way it is. the president probably needs to get on television and explain to the american people who what is going on in iraq and syria. i don't know what his foreign policy is, quite frankly.
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i just know it's not working whatever it is. >> do you want air strikes now? >> the military, number one, i want to hear from the president. i'm not the commander in chief. i'm tired of telling him what to do, it's not really my place to tell him what to do. i tell you what i think i should do. the president should address the american people about our options. one option is to stay out of it and articulate the upside and the downside. that is clearly an option, just to let it play out. my view of letting it play out is a disaster for us regionally, a disaster for us here at home. the other option is to militarily get involved without boots on the ground, air power, and how effective that could be, i don't know. i would have to listen to our commanders. putting boots on the ground is something nobody wants to envision. the interim step would be some kind of american air support, would that change the
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battlefield equation, i don't know. the military experts would have to tell me this, but at the end of the day, our president needs to inform us as a nation, does it matter at all about syria and iraq and if it does matter, what is he willing to do. as a republican, if he believes he needs to use air power to change the battlefield equation nd our generals advise us that would occur, i would be willing to support it. i remember the conversation with president bush like it was yesterday. mr. president, this is not working. i have been to iraq at the time about seven or eight times. every time i go, it gets worse. our people on the ground are telling me this place is falling apart. i don't know what the president is being told, but what i heard today scared the hell out of me. the worst is yet to come and this place is completely falling apart.
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i don't, i don't. here is another question for me. mall i can should consider resigning. i don't have faith in him. i don't think anybody who has observed iraq over the last couple of years really believes that he can hold that country together. the question for me is are we supporting a government that would have a chance to rebound itself and maintain any gains that we're able to achieve in the short term militarily. i just don't see mall i can as a -- maliki as a political figure doing what needs to be done. that's my two cents' worth. >> no scenario to stop the bleeding in iraq? >> something has to change on the battlefield to stop the bleeding. >> the president needs to replace his entire national security team which has been a total failure. they're the ones that described
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our departure from iraq as a great success. i can have many quotes that would attest to that. the president has got to learn that just because he declares a conflict is over is not because it's over and the president needs to get a reliable team around him to provide him with the options that are able and the course of actions that would be able to reverse this disaster that's unfolding before our eyes. >> do you think air strikes aren't enough? >> i'm not saying it is not enough. i am saying that we need to get the smartest guys, that's general keene, general petraeus, general mat tuss, the people that won the war with the surge and get their advice and counsel. air strikes may be part of it. air strikes may not be part of it. i would rely on their judgment. i am not calling for air strikes. i am calling for the advice and council of the smartest people who won the war in iraq before
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the president of the united states lost it. >> do the iraqis want our help? >> they're begging for it. there is a "new york times" story where they begged the last week and the last few weeks for our help. they're begging for it. they want he have kind of assistance they can have provided to them. >> would you consider boots on the ground? >> of course not. >> no. >> definitely not? >> definitely not. > thank you. >> let me just say that we got briefed and it's very concerning and it's unfolding as we speak and it will continue to unfold. waiting to see all of the facts and how quick this is going to unfold and we're going to make some decisions pretty quickly here. we're going to see what is going to be the recommendations of what we do. they made this decision in 2011 by not signing the agreement informing us to stay, they're a sovereign country and now
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they're asking for all of our assistance and help and i'm very concerned about how we are going to and how we will engage and can we engage and should we engage. it's a very concerning issue we have right now. it's alarming how quickly things are changing there on a minute by minute, hour by hour and day by day? >> should we authorize air strikes? >> it might be the only way that we can go in and give them some support so they can regroup. the army can get itself together. right now they're not doing a very good job. >> can you give any reason why we haven't done it yet? >> no, we haven't. this is a stries to everybody. being a surprise and and they're going to have to make some calculations and decisions on what we do and how quickly e do if we are going to do it. i don't think anyone is supporting engagement as far as troops on the ground. we're concerned about the uipment that they have
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already commandeered and taken back to syria. we need a better accounting. it's a good briefing. i'm sure we will debrief more. >> what happened to the iraqi forces? why are they falling? >> i think that was a surprise to everybody to have four major divisions fold as quickly as they did not even with a fight and some of them, that's a concern and why we weren't more apprised of that or had more acknowledge of that or thought that could have been a situation that unveiled the way it did. we haven't seen that or heard that at all. they basically blended back into the crowd and tried to stay out of the fight. they definitely stayed out of the fight, that's for sure. i think they're trying to rally around baghdad and some of the areas they think they can hold and get more support. it's all unfolding right now. it.e being briefed on >> senator mccain said the entire national security team
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in the white house should resign -- >> i'm not, playing politics at this right now is not a time to do that. this is very dangerous and it's concerning for that whole region. money or military might would change that part of the world, we would have done it by now. there has got to be more to it. there needs to be people to defend their own country, sovereign country, and willing to fight and die for their country. until that happens, we aren't able to change them to do it. thank you. >> indiscernible] >> what's our discussion about today? >> what do you think the u.s. should be doing in regards to iraq? >> i mean, if they call for aid, we should provide it and if they call for aid, we should provide it. look, we left the situation, we left them in a weakened state.
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this was what everyone has been concerned about. maliki has certainly not been a good prime minister. he has not reached out to the population in a way that's appropriate and therefore they have been more accepting of what al qaeda is doing in the country. he has helped create those conditions. our lack of a policy in syria has exacerbated that. certainly that is not coming to an accommodation leaving troops behind, at least at some small level has accommodated the problems that are there and i think we should do whatever is necessary to help them beat back for a short term what is happening there. >> you mean troops? >> i think with the air strikes, which is typically the way we try to do things to minimize any kind of casualties on our side. look, it's getting out of hand, this has been brewing for some
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time. i was there not long ago and iraq feels like a vacated lot. it feels like something where u.s. policy was just to check the box and leave and this is something that, again, all of us have been concerned about, i might say on both sides of the aisle. we had a lot of people lose lives, lose limb. we spent billions and billions of dollars there and again, when the agreement was reached that we were not going to have any troops on the ground, this was the very thing we all have been concerned about. we have been unable -- one of the things that was so helpful to us when we had some degree of influence in the region was having the subtled diplomacy taking place, we continued to work with the populations and continued to try to reach some accommodation. maliki has done none of that. syria has exacerbated that. our lack of presence there has exacerbated that and now we
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find ourselves where we are. >> if the u.s. does conduct air strikes, does that risk getting dragged back into the iraq conflict? >> well, i think discontinuing as it is certainly risk the entire region being just going up into flames. what is happening in syria, lebanon, for short time basis, until they can strengthen themselves, they should be open to us helping them. i have supported from 81 the sale of the equipment that they have been asking for. it has been held up. this is exactly what the helicopters were to be utilized for. this was the concern, that they
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would not be able to deal with this kind of problem. i got to go. you decidedhave what the u.s. should do? to talk to the administration, but i am very concerned. i wasows that malik unable to make accommodations with sunnis. now the most violent of sunni extremist groups have grabbed hold of the situation and is on the march to baghdad. this could be devastating. i would like an opportunity to give my views personally, but this is a very dangerous
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situation. bedo you think there should airstrikes? >> i am not going to comment on that. one needs to really understand the situation first, and my has had ace staff briefing. i have not had a chance to get that briefing, but i will. >> this would not have happened if the president had not pulled out of iraq. >> this is not the time for blame games. this is the time for both sides to come together. we have lost a lot of people in iraq, and there is a lot of suffering going on. and iraqis have lost the lot. there needs to be an approach that everybody will agree with. whether that is possible or not, i do not know, but that is what we should try to do. >> in your assessment of the
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intelligence, do you think we have been caught offguard? >> my assessment it is serious. >> were we caught offguard? >> i am not going to comment on that. we have essentially withdrawn a militaryn terms of contingent that could respond to this. >> are you asking for a meeting with white house? >> i would very much welcome a request to share views on this. this is a subject that we should the all together on, and we are not going to be together if there is not consultation between the body. it has begun. i think the armed services committee just had a briefing. staff just hade a briefing. i have not had an opportunity to get informed about what was said him up but i will have that. x very much -- thanks very much.
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white house chief of staff denis mcdonough and actor nick be a guest at the congressional correspondencets' dinner at 9:00 eastern on c-span. journal" thison morning. host: we want to welcome tony perkins. thank you for being here. let's talk about tuesday nights. it sounds like you were having dinner in virginia when you got news about what was happening. guest: it was disrupted by an earthquake, politically. as you talked about earlier in some of the political fund and its saying they should have
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anticipated this, we have seen these trends. we saw this in mississippi with thad cochran is going to run off with a tea party candidate. there is a concern within the republican establishment, or there should be, because conservatives are upset with what they are seeing. host: a tweet -- as cantor was defeated, andy roth, jenny beth, martin, tony perkins were dining in northern virginia celebrating. guest: eric is a friend of mine. i have worked closely with him on a number of issues. as many have been disconnected with the conservative base, so did he.
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part of that is traveling the country, advancing the country. i have told him this. i think the republicans were starting to be swayed by the media on taking on issues that were totally inconsistent with the party platform and with the republican and conservative base. host: what were some of those issues? guest: one, top of the issue, is the issue of immigration. is that what they were promoting? not necessarily. in the dialogue, that was the perception many had. the biggest issue is the sense of lawlessness that is coming from washington, d.c. we were discussing how the
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republicans have been obstructing the president. immigration is crisis on the border is a reflection of the lawlessness. host: rand paul is taking up immigration reform. he was on a conference call in favor of immigration reform in an effort brokered by anti-tax activists norquist potential 2016 contender. should he be taking this issue up? guest: there is an issue that needs to be addressed. what does the reform look like? how do you communicate it in a way that is not overshadowed by amnesty? our system is broken. when you have families separated by immigration, it does need to be addressed.
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let's address that first. let's address the border security issue. look at marco rubio. i appreciate the work he does. when he got out front too far in the immigration issue, it hurt him. eric cantor, this is a big part of what happened on tuesday night. i have not talked to rand paul. i have no idea what he is thinking. host: do you disagree with george will? this is what he writes -- if his defeat reinforces the perception that republicans are hostile regarding immigration and immigrant, ripples might swallow attempts to align republican policy with the 51% of republicans nationwide who, like 62% of americans, favor for the 11 million a pathway to citizenship. guest: it is an issue that must be addressed, but it is how you address it and it is the priority which you place
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upon it. we have to address the issue of border security, the issues that are hindering legal immigration. there are people trying to come to this country and play by the rules and the way the rules are structured, it is easier to avoid the rules. it is easier to come across illegally than come in and play by the archaic rules. that is not just with this administration. host: let me go back to the dinner on tuesday night. how did all of those groups come together? guest: we were just having a casual dinner to discuss a number of issues. it was totally unconnected with the election. we were getting together. we do regularly. it is not the vast right-wing conspiracy that we have heard about. it is a large number of conservative leaders who work closely together and we have a
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discussion. we were discussing the future in terms of gop leadership. we did not know it would be as imminent as it turned out to be on tuesday night. host: you had tony perkins, david bossi, richard norman was there as well. who did you discuss as the future of gop leadership? guest: it would not be a private meeting if i talked about that. the message sent on tuesday night and the message that was sent earlier in mississippi and will be sent in about 11 days when the runoff is held in mississippi, when i believe chris mcdaniel will win that race, that, look, the republicans are out of sync with their base. we saw it in 2012 and in 2008.
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if candidates will stick to the party platform and what the party has stood for historically, i think they will find success, especially in these conservative states. host: republicans will be voting on who takes over as number two. do you have names? guest: we are watching this closely. going into this before tuesday night, there will be new leadership after the next election, that john boehner will likely not be the speaker and eric was positioning himself to be speaker. there are others that were working on it. kevin mccarthy. i like jim jordan. i think he would make a great leader.
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he has done a great job of building coalitions. a lot of the conservative leadership trust him because he has been consistent. on foreign-policy issues, economic issues, as well as the social issues, so he has been a reagan republican. that is what people are looking like, someone like dave brat who understands the winning coalition for republicans is that. it is a coalition of all of those in the conservative movement. caller: i am calling because i am watching and have been watching for some time, since i retired. i just have this to say about it. it seems like we have been part of our country and community in tune with the fact that we are spending way more money than we should be.
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i believe that is where the tea party came from. our democrat party decided to go on a spending spree. i find it is insulting because this country has spent so much money that we are in oblivion. it is not going to be one party that goes down. people who do not pay attention who follow the pundits who say things that sound good and the people who -- versus the people who are a little smarter for whatever reason or pay attention more, this makes them the enemy. i have listened for several years. i have listened to many democrats. it is always democrats. they hate people they do not know. host: i will have mr. perkins respond. guest: it is not a single party issue. the spending problems we are seeing is not just the democratic problem. this goes back to republican
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administrations. that is why you see a number of these establishment republicans being defeated by candidates-- tea party is a description of the broader conservative movement. these candidates are aligned with that agenda. having spent time in office at the state level working on these issues, i am disturbed by what i have seen in the decade i have been here in washington, d.c., the increasing polarization, not gridlock. i think here in washington, gridlock is a good thing. it is the lack of civility. we used to disagree. in part, it is driven by a very
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polarized political environment and has become a winner take all. host: tom, democratic caller. caller: yeah, my family and america way first before i am a political party. you have not mentioned the true academic. the young generation. you cannot go to a piggly wiggly without people saying i am going to carry my rifle. stand up to the gun epidemic. guest: i am not sure where that was going. host: i will have you weigh in on the issue about young voters who are for immigration reform and the idea of gay marriage. guest: i don't think you can say with a broad brush that every young voter is for this.
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are there demographic shifts? absolutely. every young generation tends to deviate away from their parent'' generation. there is a turning point. when they buy the first house, they become economically conservative. that is true. that is beyond dispute. what is happening in our society today is that marriage and childbirth is being delayed much later in life. part of the reason we are seeing a decline in the fertility rate, down 1.8%, is because women are getting married later and not able to have as many children. yes, those trends are there, but they are not irreversible. host: what should be the platform of the republican
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party? what are the first three to five issues they should focus on? guest: i think republicans have a good platform now. free economy, less government. they are not anti-immigrants. they are pro-civil order. if you want to come to the country, you play by the rules. everybody here came as immigrants at some point in their family tree. it is not an issue of anti-immigration. do we do it in a fashion that upholds the law? what is happening at the border is a reflection of this lawlessness that seems to be dominating policy in d.c. host: you did not mention social issues. the libertarians want less government. you will never have less government until you strengthen the american family.
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when 41% of children born out of wedlock are more likely to go to a home that is impoverished with a single mother. the statistics are there. if we want to be successful and avoid poverty, the best way is to delay sexual activity until you're married, finish high school, get married, then have children. and the chances of being in poverty drop dramatically. host: independent caller. caller: it is not only people from mexico coming over here. it is countries down the road making a long, difficult travel. these are children. i heard this lady earlier in the
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army came back and enforce the law. it is a bigger problem than the president. these countries have terrible problems. it is a bigger problem than what you are saying. guest: there is a supply and demand of almost every issue. the issue of what is happening in central and south america and the instability there. i do not fault anybody for wanting to come to -- i am glad people still want to come to america. even in our anemic economy, we are better off than a good portion of the world. the reason these folks want to come is not a bad reason. are we doing it in a way we can assimilate them into our culture so they become part of the fabric of america and not pulling at the fabric? it is not just those from central and south america. there are those from other parts
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of the world that are using porous borders to come in that want to do harm to this country. that should be incentive for us to secure the borders. host: your only economic platform is cutting taxes for the top 1%, not fixing immigration, infrastructure, v.a., student loans, guns. guest: i am for smaller government, more efficient government that moves to the state level where we have block grants where the states administering many of the federal programs that are out of control and increasing personal responsibility for how we conduct and care for our lives. i am interested in what is happening with the v.a. i served six years in the marine corps. john f. kennedy said the way we treat our veterans is an indication of the character of our country. it is beyond question the way we
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have treated our veterans coming back from afghanistan and iraq is unacceptable. act we were running two sets of books in most of these clinics, people were waiting 90 to 120 days to be seen, i am concerned about that. we are moving towards a single-payer system of health care in this country. if we won't care for our veterans and we cannot administer a program that cares for them, how can we do that for the rest of the society? host: who do you want to win in the primary? guest: mississippi is a conservative state. highest church attendance per capita rate in the country. cochran has been there 's.ce the 1970
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chris mcdaniel is taking on cochran. cochran barely made it into the runoff with chris. that comes up later this month, i believe on the 24th. i am watching that closely. it will be another catalytic event like we saw tuesday night in virginia that will springboard into the next state. the state of louisiana, where you have an established candidate, in the primary, is being challenged by a two-party establishment. you have a couple of conservative candidate, a retired air force colonel that is challenging him. it will spill over into louisiana. host: what about kansas? pat roberts? are you looking at that race? guest: it is interesting to see how incumbents are taking notes and working diligently to be home. one of the elements that was a factor in eric's race, when i
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was elected, i took out a 20- year political veteran. part of the reason is sometimes politicians are taking positions inconsistent with the values of their constituents. they do not want to face the music. every incumbent in this environment is vulnerable. there are some i would like to see gone more than others. host: is pat roberts one of them? guest: pat is ok. who were they being challenged by and what does that challenger have to offer? it is not indiscriminate. it is, what is the alternative? host: what about lamar alexander?
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guest: lamar is one that should being worried. a lot of the positions that he has staked out are inconsistent with a lot of tennessee voters. tennessee is a pretty conservative state. i think he is one that needs to be -- orrin hatch came very close. he was watching what happened in his state prior to his reelect. he was aggressively working. senators have the benefit of having a six-year term in the midst of their turn to get ready for reelection. some not paying as close attention in the house with two years, it is harder to do that. host: mark, republican caller. caller: i am on the republican primary ballot for governor here in massachusetts. i could not agree more that it republicansform
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like david brat that we need to solve our problems. their current establishment andms to be inclusive, hopefully this will change now that cantor is out and david bratt has a chance to win. guest: i don't think it is going to change. the establishment sees the tea party as a threat. the conservatives were a threat before the tea party existed. i've been involved nearly 20 years now. i remember coming to this city in 1996, working with a conservative senate candidate, being in the back door meetings, and how there was an antagonism against a pro-life, pro-second amendment conservative candidate who did not mind talking -- i remember the key platform issue was abolishing the irs. it is amazing how things never change. problems remain consistent. the establishment was against it back then.
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host: do you feel you have always been viewed as a threat? guest: not me personally. host: the people you represent? guest: the conservatives, social conservatives are more consistent in their fiscal conservatism. the reality is we come here with a set of principles that are nonnegotiable. people say you have to compromise. you can compromise on the fringes, the peripherals, but you do not compromise on principle. if you say you are an anti-tax, anti-big government candidate and you come here and all of a sudden you start voting for taxes and you start justifying those votes, you are inconsistent with the principles you laid out before the voters.
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i think we are at a very significant moment in the history of the conservative movement. that is why i think this leadership election is so important. i am pretty certain the leadership is going to become more conservative. the question is how much more conservative. and will they embrace a ronald reagan and of republicanism? that is the question. that is fiscal conservatism, social conservatism, and a strong national defense. how aggressive will they be in building a winning coalition? if the republicans win the 2016 presidential election, they will have to find a candidate that will do that. they have been unsuccessful
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in the last two cycles. there is almost -- the conservative movement has been a victim of its own success. if you look at the last two cycles, there was a multitude of conservative candidates that fit the description. one or two moderates. they were able to consolidate a plurality of the support and get the nomination because the conservatives divided. the question is, will conservatives be able to get behind a solidly conservative candidate early enough so the candidate emerges and gets the party's nomination? host: doesn't it say something about our government that pays so much attention to illegals and ignores vets? why cantor lost? caller: you are pro-life, so why
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not come out against the nra, come out and support the snap program, come out for obamacare? i think that is an inconsistency and a hypocrisy, a part of your belief system. guest: let me take the first one. the second amendment. i spent about 10 years as a police officer. i have been at the scenes of crimes where innocent people have been attacked and have been killed by criminals who pay no attention to the law. i am a proud second amendment defender. i believe americans have a responsibility to defend themselves and their
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families. i would challenge people to look at the history of law enforcement and its origins and what it did. the fact is the second amendment is not the problem. when we see the growing violence, we see this recently. it was not guns. it has been knives, cars. it is not the instrument. it is the environment that is creating young people who will take the lives of their classmates and their friends. something has gone terribly wrong in our culture. it is a much broader discussion that needs to take place than simply the instruments that are used to take the lives of innocent people. host: randy, iowa. democratic caller. caller: there are so many things i would like to address with you. basically, this is a comment --
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i have a short comment. then i will get to the point. when you talk about immigration, you have to talk about what free trade and globalization has done to these other countries. united states did it. big business did it. the people that support you and pay your way. if you want to research something, try researching free trade and the repercussions of that. on the thing on eric cantor, i am sorry for being long-winded. in 2001, when eric cantor, which you and your people supported eric cantor, he went to washington to support george bush in 2001. 2001 was the last balanced budget that george bush saw.
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in 2002, he went to deficit spending and put everything, every piece of legislation from 2002 to 2008 on the credit card. he voted for all of that. guest: you must not have heard me earlier. our fiscal problem is not a democratic problem alone. i fully acknowledge and agree with you that the republicans were spending like drunken sailors. as john mccain said, that is an insult to sailors and how bad the spending problem is. it is a bipartisan problem. it is driven by the idea that washington can solve all of our problems. it cannot. we're seeing states that are stepping forward with conservative leadership that are providing solutions at the state level. you mentioned kansas. sam brownback is a friend. he has done a great job.
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rick perry in texas, a vibrant economy there. jobs are growing and the are going to the states because of a much more friendly environment. when you look in washington as the place where jobs are created and problems are solved, you have the wrong idea of what washington is about. host: the caller also said you are supported by big businesses. guest: we are supported by families all across this country who give small donations to us. big business does not like us because we do not go along with them. in terms of free trade, i am for free and fair trade. big business has gone too far and it does control, i believe that was part of tuesday night's referendum. eric had been listening too much to the big business lobby. host: what about the other candidates? when you look at the people they are mentioning who could be the
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number two, jeb hensarling, it appears he has ties to wall street as well. look at the top industries. the insurance industry. guest: business is about covering their bets. they are going to put money on a democratic side, on the republican side. you look at democratic leadership in the senate and you will see the same individuals and entities even money on the democratic side. it is about power. the difference with us, we are not here representing the big business interest. we are not here with the big money. we represent many voiceless people and families across the country who feel disconnected, as evidenced by tuesday night's election. host: how do you get someone into the number two spot that you do not feel is beholden to
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wall street? guest: it is a difficult challenge. you have to find somebody willing, pretty much everybody takes money from business interests and others who are offering campaign contributions. you have to find someone willing to take someone's money and vote against them if it is an issue they disagree with. host: maxine waters, take a look at the top five industries that contribute to her coffers. insurance, securities and investment, miscellaneous issues, accountants lawyers and law firms. caller: there are people out there that are like my children and grandchildren. they are only high school graduates. some did not graduate. they do not -- right now they
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are having problems with their jobs, but with all these illegals coming in, they are going to have a tremendous job of just getting a job. host: do you agree? guest: we hear that frequently. host: where is the evidence? guest: you have a large unemployed population. are these jobs that those folks want? we all focus on college, graduate school, higher education. not everyone in america goes to college. not everyone has a college degree. there is nothing wrong with -- my home state of louisiana and other states have been more aggressive in providing people technical skills so they can go
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into the workforce and work with into the workforce and work with their hands. we need those people. we need folks who can work with their hands. we need skilled laborers. that is an issue we hear. i do not know how much of the unemployed workforce is affected by that. that is a draw. when you have some big businesses that have been exploiting illegal immigrants in this country, using them, especially along the border in the border states. host: wesley in memphis, tennessee. good morning, wesley. caller: i would like for mr. perkins to comment on slating that goes on in the republican party. how the tea party people and grassroots people have -- they have had it with that stuff. it is the same old people. they have been there for 40, 50 years. they want to keep -- they do not want the tea party people in there.
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they just want to go on with their thing and blow us off. i would like to hear -- guest: i am not familiar with the term you used -- slating. caller: slating, from what i understand, it is where the regular people who have been there for years, like 40 and 50 years, lamar alexander in tennessee. host: you are saying they are being slighted by the establishment? caller: they are elitists. they do not want to hear from a tea party. they do not want us to have a seat at the table. guest: there is incentive, there is more of a seniority you work your way up. the house has been interesting. i have a master's in public administration. i thought i understood how the system worked.
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it actually works much differently than it is supposed to. in the house, under the current -- and i do not think this is an anomaly to what has happened with current leadership -- those that advance or raise money to give to the party to elect other candidates, you essentially are given a bill. thought in the formal leadership that i can point to. you have got ted cruz, you have got mike lee in the senate who i think are providing more leadership than the formal leadership. i think they are a threat to the establishment. that is why it is so popular. in the house you have a number of conservative voices, the shell box when, steve kane, not
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in official leadership positions, but they have been driving a lot of the agenda positions. they have a lot of influence. i want to thank you for joining us this morning. we are cutting this short. the houses coming into session and our earlier today. thank you very much. >> tamara a look at the tomorrow an iraq -- look at the situation in iraq. then a discussion of eric cantor's primary loss and the impact on the 2014 elections. then the recent article, the case for reparations, discussing the treatment of african-americans in the u.s. president obama today met with
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tony abbott at the white house in the oval office. the president addressed the situation in iraq and talk about issues like ukraine and the south china sea. they spoke to reporters for about 15 minutes. >> well, it's wonderful to have an opportunity to visit with prime minister abbott. we had a chance to meet when i had the great honor of addressing the australian parliament. and we are so glad to be able to return the favor in the prime minister's first visit here to the oval office. we don't have a better friend in the world, as well as the asia pacific region, than australia. they are a treaty ally. we cooperate on a whole range of issues. historically, there hasn't been a fight that the united states was in that australia wasn't standing shoulder to shoulder with us. and most recently, in afghanistan, australian troops
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have made enormous contributions and made enormous sacrifices, and we're very grateful to them for that. we had the opportunity this morning to discuss a wide range of issues, many of them focused on the importance of the asia pacific region. we discussed the security cooperation that is continuing to deepen between our two nations as treaty allies. in addition to the marines that are now in darwin and the rotations that have been established, we actually have arrived at additional agreements around force postures that will enhance the bilateral cooperation between our militaries and give us additional reach throughout this very important part of the world. and we're grateful for the cooperation there. i should note that australia, under the prime minister's
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leadership, is increasing its defense budget, even under tough times, recognizing that we all have to make sure that we're doing our fair share to help maintain global order and security. we had an opportunity to discuss the strong commercial ties between our two countries. and both of us have been very invested in trying to bring the trans-pacific partnership, the tpp, to a successful outcome. negotiations continue, but australia has been a very constructive partner in that process, and we both agree that not only can this agreement help to bring about jobs and growth for our respective populations, but it will also help establish the kinds of norms and free market principles throughout the region that will be important for our long-term prosperity. we had an opportunity to discuss the work that we try to do in the region with organizations like asean to maintain basic
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rules of the road when it comes to maritime issues, the south china sea. obviously, both the united states and australia have enormous trade relationships with china, and we both agree that it's important to continue to see china prosper and rise. but what's also important is that as china emerges as this great world power that it also is helping to reinforce and abide by basic international law and norms. and we had an opportunity to discuss some of the hotspots and international concerns that are on the front page of the papers over the last several weeks and months.
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i shared with him my views after my trip to europe about the situation in ukraine and the possibility of still resolving that issue in a diplomatic fashion, but thanked the australians for joining with us and being firm with the russians about their need to abide by international law and the application of sanctions and other consequences when they do not. we discussed the situation in the middle east, and obviously the concerns that we have around iraq and syria. both our countries are potentially threatened by jihadists and freedom fighters, as they call them, that are going into syria, getting trained in terrorist tactics and then potentially coming back to our countries and could end up being a significant threat to our homeland, as well. and we also had an opportunity to talk about north korea and the continuing threat there and
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the importance for us to maintain vigilance, including additional coordination around protection from potential missile strikes from north korea. finally, i indicated to the prime minister that i'm very much looking forward to visiting australia -- one of my favorite countries to visit -- for the g20. and i assured him that we want to cooperate in any ways that we can to ensure that australia's renowned hospitality is also coupled with a very productive set of g20 meetings to talk global growth. so i think that the prime minister and i share a whole range of concerns, but we also see a whole range of opportunities out there for increased cooperation. and i'm very glad that he's had the chance to come by today and
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have a very productive meeting. so thank you, tony. >> well, thank you so much, barack. this has been a really full and thorough engagement over the last hour or so. obviously, i'm here to thank the united states for its deepening engagement in our region. i'm here to further entrench our security and our economic cooperation. i'm here to celebrate the extraordinary friendship between the australian and the american peoples. and i'm thrilled to have you coming to the g20 in november, because we have a very important job in november in brisbane to accelerate economic growth around the world so that we have more prosperity and more jobs. obviously, right now, there are
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a whole range of security issues which the united states is leading on and where australia is doing our part to secure the freedom and the safety of the world and its citizens. i want to assure the president that australia will be an utterly dependable ally of the united states. the united states has had to bear many burdens, many burdens. the united states has paid a very high price to secure freedom and prosperity for many countries, not just itself. and the united states should never have to do all that work on its own. so it's been a terrific discussion. and i think that many good things will come from this meeting today. >> thank you, tony. i'm going to take just one question. nedra. >> mr. president, are you considering drone strikes or any sort of action to stop the insurgence in iraq?
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>> well, this is an area that we've been watching with a lot of concern not just over the last couple of days but over the last several months, and we've been in close consultation with the iraqi government. over the last year, we have been providing them additional assistance to try to address the problems that they have in anbar, in the northwestern portions of the country, as well as the iraqi and syrian border. that includes, in some cases, military equipment. it includes intelligence assistance. it includes a whole host of issues. but what we've seen over the last couple of days indicates the degree to which iraq is going to need more help. it's going to need more help from us, and it's going to need more help from the international community. so my team is working around the clock to identify how we can provide the most effective assistance to them.
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i don't rule out anything, because we do have a stake in making sure that these jihadists are not getting a permanent foothold in either iraq or syria, for that matter. part of the challenge -- and i've said this directly to prime minister maliki, and vice president biden has said this in his very frequent interactions with the iraqi government -- is that the politics of shia and sunni inside of iraq, as well as the kurds, is either going to be a help in dealing with this jihadist situation or it's going to be a hindrance. and frankly, over the last several years, we have not seen the kind of trust and cooperation develop between moderate sunni and shia leaders inside of iraq, and that
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accounts in part for some of the weakness of the state, and that then carries over into their military capacity. so i think it's fair to say that in our consultations with the iraqis there will be some short-term, immediate things that need to be done militarily, and our national security team is looking at all the options. but this should be also a wakeup call for the iraqi government. there has to be a political component to this so that sunni and shia who care about building a functioning state that can bring about security and prosperity to all people inside of iraq come together and work diligently against these extremists. and that is going to require concessions on the part of both
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shia and sunni that we haven't seen so far. the last point i'll make -- what's happened over the last couple of days i think underscores the importance of the point that i made at my west point speech -- the need for us to have a more robust regional approach to partnering and training partner countries throughout the middle east and north africa. we're not going to be able to be everywhere all the time, but what we can do is to make sure that we are consistently helping to finance, train, advise military forces with partner countries, including iraq, that have the capacity to maintain their own security. and that is a long and laborious
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process, but it's one that we need to get started. that's part of what the counterterrorism partnership fund that i am going to be calling for congress to help finance is all about, giving us the capacity to extend our reach without sending u.s. troops to play whac-a-mole wherever there ends up being a problem in a particular country. that's going to be more effective. it's going to be more legitimate in the eyes of people in the region, as well as the international community. but it's going to take time for us to build it. in the short term, we have to deal with what clearly is an emergency situation in iraq. >> perhaps, barack, i might take one question. >> mr. president, just on that point you made there about limitations of american power -- what would it take for militarization, be it in the middle east, be it in the asia pacific region?
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where is the line drawn? >> well, i gave a very long speech about all this, so i probably would refer you to that as opposed to repeating it. but the basic principle obviously is that we, like all nations, are prepared to take military action whenever our national security is threatened. where the issues have to do with the broader international order -- humanitarian concerns, concerns around rights to navigation, concerns around our ability to deal with instability or fragile states or failed states, and the consequences for populations there and refugee flows -- those sorts of international issues, wherever we can, our preference should be to partner with other countries. we're going to be more effective if we can work with other nations. >> what does -- >> and that's why -- well,
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that's part of where australia is so important to us. there are a handful of countries in the world that we always know we can count on, not just because they share our values, but we know we can count on them because they've got real capacity. australia is one of those countries. we share foundational values about liberal democracies and human rights, and a world view that's governed by international law and norms. and aussies know how to fight, and i like having them in a foxhole if we're in trouble. so i can't think of a better partner. part of our task now in a world where it's less likely that any particular nation attacks us or our treaty allies directly, but rather more typically that you have disorder, asymmetric threats, terrorist
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organizations -- all of which can be extraordinarily disruptive and damaging, but aren't the traditional types of war that so often we've been equipped to fight -- it becomes that much more important for us to start building new partners who aren't going to be as capable as the australians, aren't going to be as capable as our own troops. and that's going to take some time. it's going to take some resources, but we need to start now. we've learned some lessons over the last decade and we need to start applying them. thank you, everybody. >> at about the same time the president and prime minister senate was in session. senator john mccain spoke on the floor about iraq. he said president obama's war senate was in session. in iraq -- with great sorrow and great
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concern and an even deep alarm about the events that are transpiring rapidly in iraq. isis, the most extreme islamist organization, radical terrorist organization, now controls at least one-third of iraqi territory and is rapidly gaining more. the areas of fallujah, mosul, tikrit on the outside of samarra, with these victories, isis controls ter troer from the syrian turkish frontier in the north to the euphrates river to the iraqi city of fallujah, 40 miles west of baghdad and of course hourly they are experiencing greater gains while the iraqi military and police seem to be dissolving before our very eyes.
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isis social media published pictures of their fighters demolishing the sand berm which hitherto marked the border between syria and iraq, an interesting symbolic gesture. they also released -- isis released footage of large numbers of weapons and armored military vehicles being received by members in eastern syria, confirming fears that the looted weapons would fuel the insurgency on both sides, both syria and iraq. sources in the city -- the syrian city of asaka confirmed that large numbers of trucks, convoys of trucks carrying weapons arrived late on tuesday and were met by senior isis figure omal el-katani. the architect of the surge said -- quote -- "this organization, speaking of isis, has grown into
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a military organization that is no longer conducting terrorist activities exclusively but is conducting conventional military operations. they are attacking iraqi military positions with company and battalion-sized formations, and in the face of that the iraqi security forces have not been able to stand up to it." the most frightening part is that isis strength will only grow after today. we use the cash reserves from mosul's banks, the military seized from police bases and the release of 3,000 fighters from local jails to bolster its military and financial capacity. isis has now become the richest terror group ever, looted $500 million -- excuse me. $492 million from mosul's central bank. the governor confirmed kurdish television reports that isis militants had stolen millions from numerous banks across mosul. most disturbing is the iraqi security forces are collapsing,
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kurdish and shia mall asias are -- militias are to some degree filling the vacuum. the story goes on and on, including the fact that the international organization for migration says that as many as 500,000 citizens have fled mosul reports of tens of thousands of citizens forced from their homes and other areas as fighting escalates across northern and central iraq. and then the question arises, could all this have been avoided, and the answer is absolutely yes, absolutely yes. mr. president, i think it's probably the height of ego to quote one's self, but i think it's important to have again on the record what i said during this whole process when the president of the united states' only goal was to leave iraq and afghanistan, and he's about to make the same mistake in afghanistan that he did in iraq. and those of us who knew iraq, who knew al qaeda, who knew how vital and how fragile the iraqi
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government is, the day that the president announced that all u.s. troops would leave iraq by the end of the year, i said today marks a harmful and sad setback for the united states and the world. i respectfully disagree with the president. this decision will be viewed as a strategic victory for our enemies in the middle east. on october 21, 2011, nearly 4,500 americans have given their lives for our mission in iraq, countless more have been wounded. i fear that all of the gains made possible by these brave americans in iraq at such great costs are now at risk. november 15, 2011, the senate armed services committee, ambassador crocker said it was a mistake. i will not give the whole statement, but i said we cannot avoid the fact that iraq's progress is now at greater risk than at any times since the dark days before the surge and that it did not have to be this way. finally on december 14, the day that the president in triumph
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visited fort bragg to mark the end, in his view, the end of the iraq war, i said over 4,000 brave young americans gave their lives in this conflict. i pray that their sacrifice is not in vain. unfortunately, it is clear that this decision of a complete pullout of the united states troops from iraq was dictated by politics and not our national security interests. i believe that history will judge this president's leadership with the scorn and disdain that it deserves. and of course we now know that the united states rebuffed, according to the "new york times" today, michael gordon and eric schmidt, the united states refused malaki's request to strike against the militants, strategic disaster assisted by withdrawal from iraq, iraq's terrorists are becoming
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full-blown army. one of the smartest guys that i have encountered is a guy names dexter filkins with great experience. he has an article in "the new yorker." i quote extremist iraq rise america's legacy, and he says when the americans invaded in march of 2003, they destroyed the iraqi state. he goes on to say -- said the negotiations between obama and malaki fell apart in no small measure because of a lack of engagement by the white house. today many iraqis, including some close to malaki, say that a small force of american soldiers working in noncombat roles would have provided a crucial stabilizing factor that is now missing from iraq. samia el-askari, a malaki confident, told me from my article, and i quote, if you had a few hundred here, not a few thousand, they would be cooperating with you and they
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would become your partners. president obama wanted the americans to come home, and malaki didn't particularly want them to stay. the trouble is as the events of this week show, what the americans left behind was an iraqi state that was not able to stand on its own. what we built is now coming apart. this is the real legacy of america's war in iraq. and if i sound angry, it's because i am angry. because during this whole period of time, for example, "the washington post" in an editorial this morning called the -- quote -- iraqi success. i quote dennis mcdonough, then-deputy national security advisor and now white house chief of staff told reporters in 2011 that mr. obama -- quote -- said that we're looking for is an iraq that's secure, stable and self-reliant and that's exactly what we got here, so there's no question that this is a success. you know, sometime we're going
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to hold people responsible for their policies as well as their words. to declare that a conflict is overdoes not mean that it necessarily is over. a great piece by daniel henninger this morning in "the wall street journal" entitled "while obama fiddles." meanwhile, iraq may be transforming into, a, a second syria or b, a restored kalafate. past at some point the world's wildfires are going to consume the obama legacy and leave his successor a nightmare. mr. president, what needs to be done now? well, every hour the options become fewer and fewer as isis, the most radical islamist terrorist group alive, sweeps across iraq and now, according to the latest reports, are even
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threatening baghdad that there are signs of further deterioration of the iraqi military. what do we need to do now? obviously, the first thing i think we need to do is call together the people that succeeded in iraq, those that have been retired, and get together that group and place them in responsibility positions so that they can develop a policy to reverse this tide of radical islamic extremism which directly threatens the security of the united states of america, and it's time that the president got a new national security team. it's time that he got a group of people together that know what it is to succeed in conflict. and i would say the leader of that would be general petraeus. i would say that general maddes is one. i would say that general keane is another one. i would say that bob kagan is another one. there is a group of people,
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along with myself and the senator from south carolina, that predicted every single one of these events because of an american lack of reliability and american weakness, and the president of the united states declaring that conflicts are at an end when they are not. an exit from iraq and now an exit from afghanistan without a strategy and without victory. so drastic measures need to be taken. the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff is one who has gone along with this policy for a long time. we need a new chairman. we need a new national security advisor. we need a new team. we need a new team that knows what america's national security interests are and are more interested in national security than they are in politics. so, mr. president, i -- i come to this floor today with great sadness because all of this
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could have been avoided. there is no inevitability about what is taking place in iraq today. and iraq is a faraway place, but ask any intelligence leader in this country, and that leader will tell you that this poses a takeover of iraq in the iraq-syria area which is now the largest concentration of al qaeda in history, is a direct threat to the united states of america. our director of national intelligence, general clapper, has said in open testimony that this concentration of al qaeda-oriented and al qaeda-affiliated groups will be planning attacks on the united states of america. and the saddest part about all of this to me is the fact that 4,400 young americans lost their
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lives, thousands lost their limbs, thousands are scarred for life because of the experience that they had serving in iraq. and they had it won. in the words of general petraeus , we won the war and lost the peace, and that is a direct responsibility of the president of the united states who is commander in chief. but i grieve for those families who lost their loved ones, who fought so bravely and made such sacrifices, and to see all of that, all of that success where the surge succeeded thanks to one of the finest generals in history, general david petraeus. we see this all now torn asunder because of a policy of withdrawal without victory. and when those withdrawals and
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that policy was being orchestrated, the senator from south carolina and i and others stood up and said please don't do this. please leave a small force behind in iraq. we are begging now please leave a small force behind in afghanistan. the afghans have no air capabilities. the taliban will come back and all of the sacrifice in afghanistan will be made in vain. so at least take immediate action to try to break the advance of isis across iraq today, but also revisit the decision to completely withdraw from afghanistan because the taliban is still alive and well, because the president of the united states declares a conflict overdoes not mean in the eyes of the enemy that it's over. conflicts end when the enemy is
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defeated. the iraq war did not end because the forces against iraq were -- and within iraq were still undefeated. the conflict in afghanistan will not be over two years from now when the final 2017 -- when the final american is scheduled to leave afghanistan. please learn the lessons. i say to the president of the united states get a new national security team in place. you have been ill served by the national security team and the decisions that you have in place now and the decisions that you make, and have that new national security team come up with a strategy, a strategy to do whatever we can to prevent this direct threat to the national security of this nation, the security of this nation. so, mr. president, of all the
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visits that the senator -- the former senator from kentucky, joe lieberman and lindsey graham and i made every fourth of july, two or three times a year traveling the country and having been in the company of not just great leaders like general petraeus and ambassador crocker, but the young men, the privates, corporals, especially the sergeants. these brave, brave men and women who were serving, who were willing to sacrifice on behalf of somebody else's freedom, and they pleefd they won. the surge succeeded. any military expert will tell you the surge succeeded. but it was won at great sacrifice. among the cities, the black flags of al qaeda fly over the city of fallujah today. 96 brave soldiers and marines were killed, 600 wounded. what do we tell their families? what do we tell their families?
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what do we tell their mothers? so it's not too late. america is still the most powerful nation on earth. we still have the finest and strongest military ever. we have the finest young men and women who are serving in it ever. it is not too late. but we've got to have a dramatic reversal of course before the situation gets to the point where, as the director of national intelligence has stated, that this will be an area where attacks on the united states of america will be orchestrated. mr. president, i yield the >> white house chief of staff denis mcdonough and nick offerman will be tonight's speakers at the congressional radio television correspondents dinner. our live coverage starts at 9:00 eastern here on c-span.
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>> next, state department official roberta jacobson talks about commerce and security issues among the us-mexico border. from the listen center's mexico institute, this is 45 minutes. >> ladies and gentlemen. , sorry to gentlemen ears with an year authoritative english accent calling you to attention. please. i will not bash anything, antonio. i refuse. i am not that kind of person.
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i hate to interrupt your conversation. it's a lively group. the sign of a successful conference is when at the lunch hour, it's like a reunion and everybody is catching up. one of the things that we remember is the dynamic presentation. but the thing that makes it a success is when people are talking to each other. we had a conversation this morning all about infrastructure. we suffered from some of those challenges at the center. we don't have enough space to accommodate all those people that want to do something for the border. give us money so we can build a bigger building for you next time. you have to sort of get that out there. pleased to be able to introduce to you our speaker for lunch today. assistant roberta jacobson. a very dear friend of the wilson center in general. a woman who is much loved on
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both sides of the border. a name which everybody recognizes in mexico. always, when you talk about roberta, you get the same response from mexicans. a big smile develops on their faces. anyway, it is testament to the incredible job you have done. i will read her bio very quickly so she feels old. the secretary assist in of western hemisphere affairs in march of 2012. deputyved as principal assistant secretary for western hemisphere affairs in december 2010 to 2011. management of personnel and regional security issues -- in addition to all of these roles, she has had a long-term interest in north america covering canada, mexico, and nafta issues in the bureau.
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she was in the office of mexican affairs since december of 2002 and a coordinator of cuban affairs. that is an issue that is so fascinating to talk about here in washington and we are not often allowed to talk about. at what point do we include cuba in the discussion of north america? i will leave that out there. not today. for those of you that have come into contact with anybody from pletcher, you know they are a complete mafia. i was at a wedding in mexico and there were 13 people from pletcher that think and talk alike. is some kind of global network of these people. they are also incredibly talented. these welcome roberta jacobson. [applause] -- please welcome roberta jacobson. [applause]
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>> thank you, duncan. that was great. i thought i could eat the rest of my lunch if he was starting on my bio. it could take the rest of the afternoon. it is now very long, unfortunately. which just shows my age. but it is really a pleasure to be back here at the wilson center. i have actually never been in this room. now i know why. because as lovely as it is to look at, it's not the easiest to see all of you. i apologize. i will try to speak to the room without looking like i am calling a tennis match. it is particularly nice to be here. it is a reunion, of course, with so many people i know from before this, trips to the
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border. trips to mexico. so much of the work we have all work on bordero infrastructure, border issues, all sorts of things that so many of you in this room and i have done over the years. with the exception of the cohorts in this room that weren't born when i started working on mexican issues. there are more of those than i would like to admit. i am delighted to be here and talk to this conference. the caveat i will make before i launch into remarks is that it is with some trepidation that i address you all. one of the mixed blessings about moving up into the position that i got a little over two years from having worked on things mexican for about 10 things inng with
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other parts of north america, i now have everything from canada to argentina and don't get to spend nearly as much time as i would like focusing on the us-mexico relationship and the border. i will warn you in advance that some of the questions you ask i will not have the answers to. it's not that there are not answers to those question, i just want to have them today. -- wn't haon't have them today. i apologize in advance. i want to thank the congressman for the introduction. he and the other congressional participants are on the hill voting. that is good news for everything that we need to move forward in our congress. i will think the mexico institute here and the border trade alliance and so much of the work they do every day. as well as from mexico and everything that has come
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together in this conference which reflects what we all want to do at the border and see move forward. i know that we have congresspeople from mexico. we are really proud that we have the kind of participation today and the interest that is reflected in this crowd. reflects is that not just an abiding interest that so many of you have had in this vital region, a region that not likeways felt is mexico city or washington. but very much its own region. it reflects, also, a growing recognition by forces outside the border of the importance of the region to all of the rest of us. in the united us states and mexico and really beyond in north america and the western hemisphere.
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you know the statistics better than i do but i will roll off a couple of them because i find them reticular really impressive to us. in the united states, we sell more to mexico then result, russia, india, china combined. statistic that most americans realize. more than $1.5 billion in trade daily with mexico to support millions in jobs in the united states and throughout the two countries. when we think about that from another perspective, it is about $1 million in trade crossing the border each minute. we will be in this room or we will from the start of the program for about an hour and during that time, the u.s. and mexico will have traded about $60 million worth of goods and services. economicno other relationship more important than our border regions.
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governments are to governments recognizing the importance of the shared border. they have renewed that commitment to making it stronger, easier to get across for facilitating trade and in theand the strains security cooperation that we have. renewedhat in partnerships, renewed energy in partnerships and new partnerships that have taken place. but me tell you about a couple of them and we will talk more about what you are interested in as we have some time. the high-level economic dialogue has gotten a lot of attention over the last year or so. it was announced when the president went to mexico. it really was an important part to discuss with president obama
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as rebalancing, what most people call it. rebalancing the relationship. i call it balancing the relationship. what there was was a sense that while the relationship was till taking place on the economic and security terms, the public face of that relationship was too often focused entirely on the security. to doore, what we needed together was bring the economic and commercial side of the relationship back into the public view and make sure that we were giving it as much attention, as much profile, as much oomf as we could. a high-profile economic dialogue was launched to improve conductivity, foster economic growth, productivity, entrepreneurship, innovation, and focus on partnering with leadership both in the region of the
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western hemisphere and growing. when the vice president went to mexico, they will be meeting , i am optimistic, this fall. there are particular areas of the high economic dialogue i think are relevant to the border. is innovation council fostering cross-border entrepreneurship. seen theat you have meetings that have taken place on that in the border region. two economicched development -- launched to economic development strategies. the plans being developed, the launching of these new economic strategies are designed to make focushat we continue to on technology, innovation hubs, entrepreneurship as engines of growth in the southeast united states and the border region.
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in april, the united states and mexico agreed to conduct the small business development center with similar u.s. centers so that we can make sure that small business owners and entrepreneurs in both countries have the resources that they need to be able to talk to each other, get advice from each other, and tap into each other's network to do the exporting that they need. one of the reasons that i think it is so critical is, when the president launched the small in 2012, mexico was one of the areas in which thecenters took off fastest. there are more small business development centers located in mexico than any other country in the western hemisphere. small businesses really are the engines of growth and in particular, the engines of job creation in our economy. those small businesses in each of our countries don't export.
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even in the united states, less than two percent of small businesses export. when small businesses think about exporting, the first step they are going to take is likely with neighbors. it is more comfortable. it will be either with canada or mexico. that is what the small business center, when linked together, can help entrepreneurs do. it can help them take the first step toward exporting which can make them take a big step in their own businesses the on just their local community. completed five of six border master plans to talk about infrastructure development. the last one is on track for completion by mid-2015. we have. changes for traffic and freight models to cordon a binational strategic freight plan. coordinate binational
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strategic freight plans. promoting trusted traveler programs. you know how critical it is to promote those trusted traveler programs and make sure we can merge our trusted traveler programs to the greatest extent possible all throughout north america, making it easier for our trusted travelers to travel freely throughout the north american continent. as part ofed a lot the high-level economic dialogue and the whole rebalancing. we will continue to talk aggressively about education. this is a passion of mine in thisjob that i think mexican government shares. is representative of the competitive border and to two competitivewo- countries. the environment has to have different skills than my
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generation did, certainly. it doesn't yet, necessarily. president obama launched 100,000 strong in 2011 to increase the flow of university level exchange students between the united states and latin america and the caribbean. this program was modeled on the 100,000 strong program in china that was hoping to bring 100,000 u.s. students to china. it wasn't necessary to create a two-way program because we had no trouble attracting more than 100,000 chinese students to the united states. between the united states and the countries of latin america and the caribbean, we only have 100,000 students total on educational exchanges right now. 60,000 from the region to the u.s. and 40,000 the other way. the numbers from mexico to the united states right now and the numbers from the u.s. to mexico are artificially low.
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they are not what they should be based on our population, proximity, and the quality of our educational institutions. the quality of our educational institutions. and so we have to help get those numbers up. the exchanges are not going to make the difference in creating the workforce we need. but they do help us demonstrate that what the global workforce in the 21st century looks like is what i like to call mobile learners, they are people who have had experience in more than one culture, they speak more than one language, people who can operate in the multinational environment, whether in government, the private sector, or academia. we are going to have to be able to operate in that environment. ihi


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